Parliamentary questions
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3 December 2008


pursuant to Rule 108 of the Rules of Procedure

by Ignasi Guardans Cambó, Baroness Sarah Ludford, Sophia in 't Veld and Marco Cappato, on behalf of the ALDE Group, Giusto Catania, Sylvia-Yvonne Kaufmann, Jens Holm, Willy Meyer Pleite, Umberto Guidoni, Dimitrios Papadimoulis and Miguel Portas, on behalf of the GUE/NGL Group, Daniel Cohn-Bendit, Kathalijne Maria Buitenweg, Raül Romeva i Rueda, Cem Özdemir and Jean Lambert, on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group, Ana Maria Gomes, Claudio Fava, Giulietto Chiesa, Proinsias De Rossa, Józef Pinior and Marianne Mikko

to the Commission

  Subject: Alleged use of European countries by the CIA for the transport and illegal detention of prisoners

 Considering the report of September 2008, drafted by the Spanish Ministry of Defence, which has revealed that at least one USA military flight transporting illegal prisoners overflew Spain after a stopover in Portugal on 30 September 2005; the report by Amnesty International published in October 2008 revealing that at least 90 flights linked to the CIA made stopovers in Spain between 2002 and 2007 and that about 200 people were taken to Guantánamo on flights that took off from US military bases in/overflew Spain; and the Spanish secret document published by El País in November 2008 revealing that the government of Aznar expressly authorised a US request regarding flights over Spain carrying prisoners from Afghanistan to Guantánamo,


 Taking into consideration that, in August 2008, the Polish media reported that a note prepared by military intelligence, confirming the existence of a secret CIA facility, had been seen by government officials in 2006,


 Taking into consideration that President Barroso publicly said that he ‘did not authorise, and was not even aware of any secret CIA flights through Portugal when he was Prime Minister’ but that official military data from the Pentagon demonstrate that military flights transporting illegal prisoners (including prisoners whose charges were recently dropped by the Pentagon) did stop over and/or overfly Portugal when Mr Barroso was Prime Minister,


 Taking into consideration the statements by the Portuguese Foreign Minister, Luís Amado, on 7 October 2008 explaining that ‘it would have been totally irresponsible for the current Portuguese executive to have raised that matter, which implicated the president of the Commission, Durão Barroso, who was at the time of the facts Portuguese Prime Minister",


1. Will the Commission take any measures regarding this new information to assert the responsibility of the countries involved and to verify if other Member States also received similar requests?


2. Does the Commission agree that there is now enough evidence to acknowledge that, even if Member States cooperated in the USA ‘extraordinary renditions’ programme without being aware of its full extent, they should assume their share of responsibility for that cooperation? And does the Commission agree that Member States should offer political asylum to the prisoners who are still detained in Guantánamo but who have not been charged and whom the USA cannot repatriate to their countries of origin?



Tabled: 03.12.2008

Forwarded: 05.12.2008

Deadline for reply: 12.12.2008

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